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Gifted and Talented
Welcome to Region 16 Gifted and Talented
Welcome to Region 16 Gifted and Talented

"Gifted and talented" are children and young adults with exceptional abilities or potential. The specialists at Region 16 are dedicated to helping these students get the resources they need to excel in the classroom and in life.

Joanna Martinez
Learning Leader
Gifted and Talented/
Response to Intervention (RtI)
Links and helpful resources

The Latest on Gifted/Talented Certification

What Kind of Credit Will I Get?

Tips for GT Coordinators

Summer Opportunities for GT Students

G/T Generic Forms

Texas State Plan for the Education of Gifted/Talented Students

Resources and Links

Links of Interest

The Latest on Gifted/Talented Certification

The standard Texas Administrative Code rule concerning training for teachers in gifted education programs remains in effect for the 2006-2007 school year. This rule requires that teachers providing instructional services to identified gifted learners complete 30 hours of G/T professional development in nature and needs of the gifted, assessment of the gifted, and curriculum for the gifted before beginning instruction, with annual six hour updates in gifted education each year thereafter.

On May 6, 2005, the State Board for Educator Certification (SBEC) voted NOT to require teachers to hold the new “TExES Gifted and Talented Supplemental Certification” in order to be assigned to a district's gifted services program.  The Gifted and Talented Supplemental Certification is an optional certificate, which educators may voluntarily hold above and beyond the basic state requirements by passing the TexES exam. The State Board of Educator Certification offers the exam.

The content on the G/T Supplemental test is derived from the G/T standards, and is a multiple-choice format exam. The G/T standards are listed on the SBEC website under the “Standards and Testing” link, along with a study guide and sample questions. website

What Kind of Credit Will I Get?




 Teachers often have questions about the type of AAS credit they will receive for a workshop listed in the online catalog. Here’s a quick way to tell if you will be receiving Basic Credit (part of the mandated 30 hours) or Update Credit (the 6-hour credit required annually after the 30 hours is completed. 


Any workshop listing that begins with “AAS Day 1”, “AAS Day 2”, etc. is BASIC training and update credit will not be awarded for those sessions. 

All other workshops listed will be eligible for UPDATE credit. 

Be sure to check the catalog often as new workshops are added periodically during the year and many fill quickly!




Tips for GT Coordinators

If you have been tapped as your campus or district coordinator/contact, you may not know exactly where to begin! The following tips, originally submitted by Region 4 ESC Advanced Academic Services Specialist, Judy O’Neal, may give you some ideas about where to start.

1.     Be sure you have your Regional Education Service Center’s Advanced Academic Services program specialist’s information handy. These specialists are ready to answer all of your GT questions--or find someone who can. There is no such thing as a silly question, and when you are new may have many of them!

2.     If you have not taken “Nature and Needs of Gifted Learners” and “Identification of Gifted Learners” recently, try to re-take the session(s). Be sure you attend a session that will address the laws and guidelines for gifted programs in Texas. Regional Service Centers offers these workshops several times each year, and it is the best way for a new coordinator to receive this information. Being in a class gives you the opportunity to ask questions.

3.     Begin to look at your district’s G/T program and compare it with the State Plan for the Education of Gifted/Talented Students.  Is your district in compliance with the “Acceptable” regulations of the plan? (This is the minimum level of compliance for districts.) Ask your ESC specialist to look over your plan if you have questions.

4.     Find out how gifted services being provided. For example: Pull out Program, Special Schools within a School, Cluster Groups of G/T Students in Regular Classrooms, Self-contained classrooms, etc. Is the current system providing students with on-going, differentiated TEKS-based instruction?

5.     Find out who is delivering gifted services. Be sure that there is documentation to support that each of the assigned G/T teachers has the required G/T training. Talk to the administrators on each campus and find out if administrators and counselors have had the required G/T training in Nature and Needs and Program Services.

6.     Look at your list of identified gifted students at each campus. Confirm that they are in class with a G/T trained teacher, and perhaps most importantly, that teachers are aware of which students in their classrooms are identified as needing advanced services.

7.     Look at your District’s identification/assessment matrix. Find out how your student’s are identified. Look at your district’s demographics. Does your gifted program reflect your district’s demographics? Is there ample evidence that students from all populations are being assessed in ways that best exemplify their abilities?

8.     Find out how teachers are documenting gifted services delivery, or help to develop a framework for teachers to use that will show their efforts and monitor student’s progress.  Be sure a system for reporting student’s progress to parents is in place and that parents are receiving updates in a scheduled way.

9.     Review the District’s G/T Handbook for Parents/Teachers/Students. Does it reflect what is happening in your district?

10.   Ask teachers what kind of professional development/support they need to better work with their gifted students and work with building administrators to deliver that support. The State Plan indicates that training should be specific to needs expressed by teachers, so an ongoing dialogue with these professionals is vital.


Summer Opportunities for GT Students

Several area and state organizations offer summer learning experiences for gifted children. If you have questions about the upcoming events in Summer 2008, you may contact the following agencies as below.

Amarillo Area

Amarillo Museum of Art Children’s Summer Camps

Amarillo Little Theatre Academy Summer Day Camp
ALT Box Office: 355-9991

American Quarter Horse Heritage Center & Museum
For information, call 376-5181

WTAMU Leadership Camp for Future Teachers
Contact Gilbert Antunez, 651-2610

Youth Cowboy Poetry Gathering at Cal Farley’s Boys Ranch

Around the State

Shake Hands With Your Future—Texas Tech University
Phone: 806-742-2420, ext. 241 


Texas Honors Leadership Program—Lamar University
Phone: (409) 880-8046

Stephen F. Austin State University Summer Academy 2006
Phone: (936)468-2101 or (936) 468-2504

Houston Museum of Natural Science Xploration Summer Camps

The Museum of Health and Medical Science Summer Camps 2006 (Houston)

Texas A&M University Youth Adventure Program (College Station and Galveston)
Phone: (979) 845-1802

The following websites also offer listings of various summer activities that parents and students might find interesting:

National Association for Gifted Children (camps listed by state)

Texas Association for Gifted/Talented

Texas State Plan for the Education of Gifted/Talented Students

Gifted programs at the district and campus level need to be structured in a way that meets minimum compliance (“Acceptable”) in five specific areas. These areas are explained in the Texas State Plan for the Education Of Gifted/Talented Student, and further explained in the Q &A.

To read PDF files you will need a copy of Adobe's free Acrobat Reader.

  • Q & A on the Texas State Plan for the Education of Gifted & Talented Students

Resources and Links

Texas Education Agency (TEA) Performance Standards Project for Gifted/Talented Students

The Performance Standards Pilot represents an initial effort to develop statewide standards and an accompanying assessment system that will capture the high levels of achievement exhibited by gifted and talented students in Texas. In addition to providing summative information on an individual student's learning, the results of this assessment may be used to improve a campus's or district's efforts to serve gifted and talented students.

Texas Education Agency (TEA) Division of Advanced Academics Services

This link will provide information resources for areas such as:

  • GT Administrative Codes
  • Graduation Requirements
  • Credit by Exam
  • AP/IB Programs
  • GT State Plan

National Association for Gifted Children (NAGC)

The National Association for Gifted Children (NAGC) is a non-profit organization of parents, teachers, educators, other professionals and community leaders who unite to address the unique needs of children and youth with demonstrated gifts and talents as well as those children who may be able to develop their talent potential with appropriate educational experiences.

Texas Association for the Gifted and Talented (TAGT)

TAGT mission is to promote awareness of the unique social, emotional, and intellectual needs of gifted and talented students and to impact the development of appropriate services to meet these needs.

The National Research Center on the Gifted and Talented

Programs and services designed to challenge the highest levels of learning and creativity; to promote high expectations, rigorous standards, and greater engagement with subject matter should be an integral part of every school's overall program. We believe that the nation's largest reservoir of untapped talent can be found among those young people who, by reason of economic circumstances and all of the problems that surround poverty in America, have not been given equal opportunity and encouragement to develop their potentials to the fullest. Accordingly, our orientation and related research has been to apply the strategies of high-end learning to total school improvement and to focus our research on developing gifts and talents in young people based on a broad array of both traditional and emerging indicators of potential for high performance.

Links of Interest








EDUCATION WORLD (A searchable database of more than 100,000 Web sites for teachers).


THE WOODSHED - ENRICH YOUR MIND (contains Subjects of Interest, Teacher Resources, Student Hangouts, References & Resources, and Other Informative Places)


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